This year I had the opportunity to lend a helping hand in the gull colony of IJmuiden (Forteiland) in the Netherlands during a full breeding season. This meant visiting the colony each Monday from mid-April to the beginning of July to read rings, count nests and number of eggs per nest, assist with the ringing of adults and juveniles and trying to find out relationships between ringed adults and those between ringed juveniles and ringed adults.
This also allowed plenty of time to take many photos as a way to read rings and (as a private project) to document primary moult and primary patterns.
All in all it was a great way to study Lesser Black-backed Gulls Larus fuscus graellsii (Dutch intergrade) and Herring Gulls Larus argentatus argenteus from up close.
Unfortunately visits to the colony have now come to an end so it is time for some overviews.
First up: Herring Gulls. Those of Lesser Black-backed Gulls will follow later while interesting individuals will follow in separate posts.
All photos were taken during the breeding season of 2015 (from mid-April to early July), all ringed birds have been ringed in the colony.
Male Green YBAJ at the nest with 2 chicks. 15 June 2015.